The Great Contradiction of the Prolife Right

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A consistent life ethic simply has to mean support for a social safety net for poor mothers.  But the great commitment of the prolife right to a libertarian economic vision that is guaranteed to actively punish poor women makes certain that abortion rates will climb if it is enacted.  Because Libertarianism is, at bottom, the insistence that property rights are absolute and human life takes a back seat my right to my stuff.

Catholic social teaching, in contrast, has always insisted that property rights, while real, are not absolute and other things take priority over them.  Our demented culture instantly shrieks “socialism!” when it hears that and reacts by declaring the poor to be parasites who need to be punished.  And so, pregnancy is treated as irresponsibility (as is every condition touching on medical care).  Women are charged with fornication.  Diabetics with gluttony.  Smokers with the puritan sin of smoking. Cancer victims with “bringing it on themselves”, etc. All in the search for a way to deny the right of health care to people who cannot afford it.  And so, the “prolife” right sides adamantly with the idea of making sure that those in need of health care–including pregnant women–are denied it.  All while bragging about caring for the unborn.  And in atonement, it points to the bandaid of crisis pregnancy clinic which see mom through the crisis of birth and a few weeks beyond and then that’s it.  She’s on her own and (if the Party of Trump gets its way) saddled, not only with maternity costs but with massive and impossible bills should there be something wrong with baby.  And if the woman is a faithful Catholic who is actually trying to heed Church teaching on contraception, she will have a chorus of “prolife” right wing voices yelling at her that “five kids is enough” and how dare she try to milk the system for help.

That’s the most incredible part to me: Catholic “prolife” conservatives shouting at poor people not to use artificial contraception on pain of mortal sin and then shouting at them that they will be punished as welfare parasites when they try to obey the Church.  Can those guys not see how they make clear that they hold the Church’s teaching in utter contempt for the sake of a few bucks out of their paycheck?

Health care is a right.

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